Just How Fabulous is that Baker Boy!
Popular multi-concept bakery, patisserie, café and restaurant makes a big comeback, bridging food and the arts in heritage venue
(Singapore - 9 February 2021) I never would have thought of combining chicken with waffles, but
I didn’t know Juwanda Hassim, (pictured right) who is not only a baker, a theatre actor, owner of The Fabulous Baker Boy but a creator of cakes, all-day breakfast brunch items and café classics that look fabulous and taste even better.
I joined Yvonne Phua, Principal Consultant, Empower Marketing Asia, and Beth Hollahan, who does Consulting and Coaching, for lunch at the Kampong Glam location. It is always good to eat with others, not just for their fabulous company, but so you can share dishes and experience more of what is being offered.
For me, one of the benefits of Covid-19 protocols is the requirement to space tables further apart in restaurants. With any table arrangement TFBB would feel bright and spacious and airy with its high ceilings and large windows. Cool and casual café vibes are served in a palette of pastel colours that mingle with the inviting aroma of artisanal baked goods and home-cooked cuisine
The new 70-seater café, bakery and restaurant is located in the art-deco Aliwal Arts Centre. Aliwal runs between North Bridge Road and Beach Road in that delightful area that gains character not only from heritage buildings of various vintages, but by wall murals in unexpected places and restaurants and bars tucked in alleys and shops stuffed with everything from clothing to carpet to collectibles.
In its previous location at Fort Canning – across from Clarke Quay – TFBB was famed for its riveting array of fabulous cakes. When the lockdown eased last year Juwanda was besieged with calls for the cakes – a substantial business when dining inside wasn’t the thing to do.
When his lease expired at the old location Juwanda took the opportunity to move to Aliwal – next to the theatre where his other passion for entertaining can be played out. Now, The Fabulous Baker Boy presents an all-day breakfast brunch menu that includes artisanal baked goods and marries delicious home-cooked food with a contemporary interior at their Big Love Bakery and Soul Kitchen.
When I joined Yvonne and Beth for lunch, I should’ve thought of it more as an extended brunch/lunch indulgence. We began with a selection of bread and spreads. I had a latte, strong but not bitter. For me, brunch is not brunch without a good coffee.
Juwanda suggests you pair popular items like TFBB’s Fried Chicken and Waffles with delicious smoothies, milkshakes, ice-cream and chocolate-based beverages. Which Yvonne had started with before I arrived. Cheese lovers will enjoy the Roast Chicken and Pesto Grilled Cheese Sandwich, which features The Fabulous Baker Boy’s house sourdough bread slices filled with a tasty three-cheese mix of cheddar, parmesan, mozzarella, roast chicken and herbed pesto.
Beth went with the Fried Chicken and Waffles and the serving was more than she could eat – knowing that slices of those incredible cakes would soon be arriving. I had the fish and chips – and again a very large portion that would be filling on its own. The batter is distinctly different than the traditional crispy plain coating that sometimes could substitute for a hockey puck. TFBB’s fish batter is soft with a savory flavour.
With more than 14 cakes how do you decide which one to go for? This is where it helps to be with a small crowd – you know you can dine in groups of eight now. Choices include the celebrated Ab Fab Red Velvet, a true classic from the 1950s that comes with an extra layer of chocolate ganache. Then there is the Nutty Monkey, which is a banana coconut cake, but we all eyed the Big Lub Carrot Cake which Yvonne recommended. The slices of the three we choose were large and luxurious. The Big Lub Carrot Cake was not overhyped.
Check out the menu on-line and you’ll probably be crowding me out for reservations as I will be returning to enjoy more of the enticing range of dishes. The service is attentive and the ambience enhances the experience.
28 Aliwal Street, #01-01,
Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9:30am to 6:30pm, Closed on Mondays
Tel: +65 89517716 for reservations.
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